Tony Whitby left the house- builder Laing in 1989 to set up his own firm, Whiteoak Developments. He took out a mortgage to buy his first plot of land and used the profits from the sale to fund his next land purchase. Thirteen years on, Whiteoak has just completed 390 homes at Eastbourne’s prestigious Sovereign Harbour marina. The Epsom company’s sales have grown 76% a year from £1.2m in 1998 to £6.6m in 2001, when it had 15 staff.
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